The Way to Happiness—Antidote to Man’s Inhumanity to Man

The Way to Happiness Association of Tennessee brought its common-sense moral code to this year’s Intertribal Powwow in Clarksville, Tennessee.

The Native Cultural Circle (NCC) of Clarksville held its 19th annual Intertribal Powwow with a weekend of remembrance and festivities. 

Native American Indian Association Powwow
PNative Cultural Circle (NCC) of Clarksville held its 19th annual Intertribal Powwow. Photograph courtesy of Native American Indian Association of Tennessee

The Powwow is held each year in a location with special significance to Native peoples. During the “Indian Removal” of 1838, the Cherokee nation was taken from their traditional homes in Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, and Alabama and forcefully relocated to the Indian Territories in what later became Oklahoma. The Powwow grounds lay along the northern land route. Diary records of the removal identify Port Royal as the last stop before leaving Tennessee and as an encampment site where the Cherokee stayed overnight or longer to re-supply, grind corn and rest.

An estimated 4,000 to 6,000 Cherokee died during that tragic journey, known in Cherokee as Nunna daul Tsuny, “The Trail of Tears” or “The Trail Where They Cried.”

While the powwow commemorates the inhumanity of the Trail, it is also a time for people from all walks of life to honor Native Americans and explore their culture and traditions.

At this year’s powwow, The Way to Happiness Association of Tennessee distributed copies of The Way to Happiness, a common-sense nonreligious moral code. The booklet teaches tolerance, justness and compassion among the virtues necessary to a moral and truly happy life. “It is the lack of these basic principles that opens the door to atrocities such as the Trail of Tears and human rights violations extant in our world today,” says Rev. Brian Fesler, President of the Church of Scientology Nashville, who coordinates the activities of the Association. “Application of the precepts of The Way to Happiness guards against any future Trail of Tears.”

The mission of the Native Cultural Circle is to provide quality educational programs and materials to local schools and the residents of Middle Tennessee and South Central Kentucky, to raise awareness of the cultures and traditions of the Native peoples of the Americas.

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